Where there’s light, there’s hope and Wests Tigers halfback Luke Brooks refuses to concede his side is out of NRL finals contention.
The Tigers’ chance of making their first finals appearance in five season were dealt a blow in Friday night’s embarrassing 40-10 defeat to Penrith.
Only a mathematical chance and needing to win their last two games with other results to run their way, Brooks said he hadn’t given up hope.
“As a team we want to improve and we’ve still got a chance of making the eight,” Brooks said.
“This week is a big game for us.
“We’ve just got to worry about what we can control. We just need to win and if the other games go our way then that’s a bonus.”
The Tigers are 10th and three points outside the eight and they must beat the ninth-placed Warriors in a do-or-die showdown at Mt Smart Stadium on Sunday before meeting the in-form Canberra in the final round.
They must now win their final two as well as hope the Warriors and Gold Coast lose their remaining games.
With a top-eight berth up for grabs, the Tigers produced one of their worst defensive performances of the season in their seven-tries-to-two loss to the Panthers.
Hurt by 48 missed tackles, Brooks acknowledged his side failed to handle the occasion but was at a loss to explain what went wrong.
“We were obviously disappointed in the way we played,” Brooks said.
“The last two months we’ve been playing great footy and to put in a performance like that is disappointing especially with finals on the line.
“The only way we can make up for it is to put in a good performance this week.”